I'm looking for a device for drawing.

The magic smoke.

Moderators: phlip, Moderators General, Prelates

User avatar
New User
Posts: 592
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 4:40 am UTC
Location: USA

I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby New User » Sun Aug 06, 2017 6:14 am UTC

I'm looking for a device that will interface with my computer and allow me to draw as if drawing with a pencil on paper. I'm not much of an artist, but I'd like to draw sometimes. So, I'm not looking for anything professional-grade or super expensive. I don't know much about the topic. Many years ago, I saw someone with a flat pad that looked like plastic. It had a stylus, that was probably electronic and battery-powered, and when he would drag the stylus across the pad, the drawing would show up on the screen. But this was so long ago that this technology might be obsolete. I have heard that some people nowadays use a touchscreen tablet or something to draw with a plain plastic stylus. It's my understanding that this can cause significant wear on the touch screen if used frequently. I don't own a tablet, and never have owned one, so I don't know much about them at all. I normally despise touchscreen interfaces, but I would use it if it's the best way to draw.

Is there anyone available who likes to draw casually or professionally who can offer me any recommendations? Is a tablet overkill if drawing is literally the only thing I would use it for?

User avatar
Soupspoon
You have done something you shouldn't. Or are about to.
Posts: 2546
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:00 pm UTC
Location: 53-1

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby Soupspoon » Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:34 am UTC

I was actually looking at this sort of thing in a shop, just two days ago. Just for fun and without reasonable intent to buy. Yet.

Thus here is the kind of thing you're looking for on their online store, to give you an idea what to look for in your own locality.


(Perhaps (after suitable currency conversion) prices also useful as a guideline, but I don't know if this is one of those products where this particular retailer is at the better end of the deal spectrum or the worse. They tend to be less of a bargain for USB sticks, at the moment, compared with other places, but very good on other items I'm likely to buy from them for others.)

User avatar
New User
Posts: 592
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 4:40 am UTC
Location: USA

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby New User » Sun Aug 06, 2017 11:57 am UTC

Thanks for the reply. A few hours after I posted this, I found out that one of my Steam friends is into graphic design. He told me that he uses a Wacom Intuos tablet for drawing. He seemed satisfied with it, so I'm looking at those and similar devices. I'm only going to be using it for casual drawings, nothing professional, so I'm not looking to spend over $200.

The nomenclature is confusing me, because if someone were to say, "I use a tablet for drawing," I don't know if they mean one of these drawing tablets or a touchscreen tablet PC like an iPad or similar. It seems that these flat plastic drawing tablets are still in common use, even though there are other options available (the same Steam friend says he wants to buy a touchscreen-like drawing device that will let him draw directly on his drawing, as he put it, instead of drawing on a blank tablet and looking at the monitor to see the results. But that's far too expensive for my needs).

User avatar
Jplus
Posts: 1692
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 12:29 pm UTC
Location: Netherlands

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby Jplus » Sun Aug 06, 2017 5:08 pm UTC

The full name for the plastic peripheral device is "pen tablet". You can use "tablet device" or "tablet computer" to distinguish the other kind of tablet when necessary.

Very much above your budget, but mentioning it for completeness: some while ago, Apple released their iPad Pro together with the "Pencil". I didn't try that combination myself, but from reviews it appears to be the bee's knees for digital drawing.
"There are only two hard problems in computer science: cache coherence, naming things, and off-by-one errors." (Phil Karlton and Leon Bambrick)

coding and xkcd combined

(Julian/Julian's)

User avatar
Flumble
Yes Man
Posts: 1951
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2012 9:35 pm UTC

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby Flumble » Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:12 am UTC

I'm not up-to-date with tablet pens, but way back (some 10 years ago) the only cheapish tablet pens that weren't battery-powered were Wacom pens. The others were powered with AAA cells or similar and therefore quite bulky and not like a regular pen.
Moreover, cheap models didn't offer tilt sensors, which you will miss when you want to do caligraphy or shading like you're used to with an actual pen(cil).


Jplus wrote:Very much above your budget, but mentioning it for completeness: some while ago, Apple released their iPad Pro together with the "Pencil". I didn't try that combination myself, but from reviews it appears to be the bee's knees for digital drawing.

...together with the Surface Pro.

KnightExemplar
Posts: 5492
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 1:58 pm UTC

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby KnightExemplar » Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:27 pm UTC

New User wrote:I'm looking for a device that will interface with my computer and allow me to draw as if drawing with a pencil on paper. I'm not much of an artist, but I'd like to draw sometimes. So, I'm not looking for anything professional-grade or super expensive. I don't know much about the topic. Many years ago, I saw someone with a flat pad that looked like plastic. It had a stylus, that was probably electronic and battery-powered, and when he would drag the stylus across the pad, the drawing would show up on the screen. But this was so long ago that this technology might be obsolete. I have heard that some people nowadays use a touchscreen tablet or something to draw with a plain plastic stylus. It's my understanding that this can cause significant wear on the touch screen if used frequently. I don't own a tablet, and never have owned one, so I don't know much about them at all. I normally despise touchscreen interfaces, but I would use it if it's the best way to draw.

Is there anyone available who likes to draw casually or professionally who can offer me any recommendations? Is a tablet overkill if drawing is literally the only thing I would use it for?


Okay, there's a lot of technologies out there. Obviously, the best is the $2000 Cintiq QHD but lets go with an overview of the technologies.

1. Simple Stylus -- Either Resistive (Nintendo 3DS) or Capacitive (Early Galaxy Note). These are... not very good and not suitable for serious drawing applications. At best, these simple designs inaccurately tells you the location of the stylus, and that's about it.

2. Active Digitizer -- Between $80 and $300, depending on the quality and size. Wacom sells these as the "Intuos" series. The stylus has a radio inside of it, and many sensors running across the tablet are constantly triangulating the position in a precise manner. Futhermore, the tip of the stylus is pressure-sensitive, and often is designed to feel like "a real pencil".

3. Active Digitizer WITH a screen -- Surface Pro / iPad Pro synchronize a screen to the pen, and its honestly extremely impressive that this technology is available. So Surface Pro / iPad Pro are definitely recommendations if you also want a computer. But a serious art solution like the Cintiq 13 HD is far, far superior ($800 + more for attachments and extra pens).

-----

Other technologies:

* Tilt Detection -- iPad Pro and "Intuos Pro" have tilt detection, so that you can "paint" with calligraphy. If you are a serious pencil artist, being able to "switch widths" by simply tilting your hand is extremely natural. Tilt-detection is necessary for proper synchronization with the screen and maximum accuracy.

* Physical Photoshop bindings -- For example, you can buy multiple pens with a Intuos and bind them to different Photoshop tools. One pen can be an eraser, another pen can be "smudge", and a 3rd can be paintbrush, and a 4th can be pencil. The Surface Pro's pen is double-sided, with the "eraser" typically being bound to the back-end of the Surface Pro's stylus.

--------------

If you're serious about this, the Intuos is the cheapest you should by.

https://us-store.wacom.com/Catalog/Pen- ... hoto-s01#/

It won't have tilt-detection or a screen-synchronization, but it should be good enough to get serious drawings done. Intuos Pro is a bit more luxurious at $250 (but including tilt-detection and lots of buttons for photoshop bindings). I'd say Intuos Pro is the entry-level for the serious art student.

In any case, you'll want to also budget out Photoshop or whatever program you plan to use. Its not like Corel Painter or Photoshop are cheap. You can get pretty far with GIMP, and GIMP works with Intuos to some degree.

----------------------

allow me to draw as if drawing with a pencil on paper


FYI: $50 will get you pretty damn far with Pencil and Paper. Any reason why you aren't going to just buy a good pad of High-quality Vellum and a set of graphite pencils and/or a nice drafting pencil??

When you're done with a pencil drawing, just scan it in with an office scanner.
Last edited by KnightExemplar on Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:40 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
First Strike +1/+1 and Indestructible.

User avatar
Soupspoon
You have done something you shouldn't. Or are about to.
Posts: 2546
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2016 7:00 pm UTC
Location: 53-1

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby Soupspoon » Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:39 pm UTC

(But GIMP is free, and I'm fairly sure it can bind/be bound to a pressure/tilt/tool-choosing device in at least as many ways as the mid-range non-FOSS solutions.)

EvanED
Posts: 4327
Joined: Mon Aug 07, 2006 6:28 am UTC
Location: Madison, WI
Contact:

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby EvanED » Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:56 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:* Tilt Detection -- iPad Pro and "Intuos Pro" have tilt detection, so that you can "paint" with calligraphy.
Per a link posted upthread, the latest Surface Pro has tilt support as well.

Tilt-detection is necessary for proper synchronization with the screen and maximum accuracy.
At least some people would disagree with you; e.g., Gabe from Penny Arcade talked a lot about how much he liked the Surface before it had tilt support.

That said, of course both the Surface Pro and iPad Pro will be out of your budget.

KnightExemplar
Posts: 5492
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 1:58 pm UTC

Re: I'm looking for a device for drawing.

Postby KnightExemplar » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:06 pm UTC

EvanED wrote:
Tilt-detection is necessary for proper synchronization with the screen and maximum accuracy.
At least some people would disagree with you; e.g., Gabe from Penny Arcade talked a lot about how much he liked the Surface before it had tilt support.


Gabe is a professional artist, so I need to be careful when disagreeing with him. :-) I also haven't used the latest Surface pen, so I'm not sure if the added tilt support degraded its abilities elsewhere.

But with regards to say, the Surface 2, which I have used... the screen was slightly off sync with the pen, especially when the pen was tilted.

Image

--------

I can imagine that someone who has practiced writing with the Surface 2 might prefer the Surface 2 behavior over time. But my natural instincts prefer the tilt-detection. I can agree that this sort of feature might be more of a "personal feel" thing.

In either case, the mouse-cursor moves with the pen, because the active-digitizer tracks you even when you're an inch or two above the tablet. The radio trangulation thingy is amazing. So be sure to get an active digitizer regardless.
First Strike +1/+1 and Indestructible.


Return to “Hardware”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest